VNC Clients

To connect to a desktop session for using Graphical User Interface (GUI) applications on Rosalind a VNC client is required. Any VNC client can be used but an SSH tunnel to the login nodes is required so we recommend VNC clients here that have that functionality built-in.

Linux

Remmina

  1. Install the latest version available from the Remmina site
  2. Create a new connection profile with the following settings:
    • Name: Rosalind
    • Protocol: VNC - VNC viewer
    • Server: <hostname>:<port> (for port use value from the alces session command; for hostname see Connection hostname)
    • User password: <password> (received from the alces session command)
    • SSH Tunnel Tab
      • Enable SSH Tunnel
      • User name: <your KCL username>
      • Password: <your KCL password>
  3. Click "Save and Connect"

Windows

TurboVNC

  1. Install the latest version from the TurboVNC site.
  2. Run "Java TurboVNC Viewer" (n.b. it is necessary to run the Java version of the viewer for the ssh tunneling support).
  3. Click "Options", on the "Security" tab enter the following settings:
    • SSH user: <your KCL username>
    • Check "Use VNC server as gateway"
    • Click "OK"
  4. Enter the VNC server: <hostname>:<port> (for port use value from the alces session command; for hostname see Connection hostname)
  5. Click Yes to the SSH fingerprint prompt
  6. Enter your KCL password at the SSH Password prompt
  7. Enter the password received from the alces session command at the VNC authentication prompt

MacOS

Screen sharing

  1. Open the terminal and create an ssh tunnel that will forward port 5900 to the <remote port> on the <IP address> host, e.g.:

    ssh -NL 5900:localhost:<port> <username>@<hostname>

    where <username> is your KCL username, <port> is given in the output of the alces session command and for the hostname see Connection hostname.

  2. Navigate to Finder -> Go -> Connect to server and as the connection string use vnc://<username>@localhost where <username> is your KCL username.

  3. Enter the password received from the alces session command at the VNC authentication prompt.

    Important

    When the ssh command executes successfully you will not see any feedback on the screen. Make sure that you do not close the terminal window, or exit the ssh command as that will terminate your vnc session.

Connection hostname

Connection hostname refers to the FQDN of the login node that the alces session was started on. This will be one of the existing login nodes:

  • login3.rosalind.kcl.ac.uk, or
  • login4.rosalind.kcl.ac.uk

Hint

You can find out the hostname of the session host by running hostname -s on it. Append .rosalind.kcl.ac.uk to the resulting string to get the FQDN.